Awards & Engraving

June '18

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36 • A&E JUNE 2018 Sandcarving also makes the cut. "Sand- carving wood is generally a quick option and allows for paint-fill or a clear coat to reveal the natural wood grain," states Liz Haas, Rayzist. She adds that this option is unique because you can be creative with either revealing the natural grain, adding various colors, or combining the two. WORK IT Breaking it down by technology, chances are most awards retailers will at some point use a laser to embellish a wood product. Whether it's a plaque or keepsake box, engraving offers great end results when executed correctly. If you're unsure of how to approach laser engraving wood, Stephens has a few pointers. "Wood type is an important factor when it comes to how intricate the material can be decorated," he emphasizes. "Denser wood is typically harder to cut or engrave, and darker wood limits the level of con- trast that can be produced." He adds that wood with higher grain content can cause problems with the visibility of the image. Madison adds to that point, stating that some wood pieces even have different stains on them that can affect the end result. He cautions to do your research before pur- chasing because not all wood products are equal in terms of quality. Perhaps you're interested in taking the sandcarving route, in which case, Haas has a few recommendations. "Softer wood materials etch quicker than hard wood materials," she points out. "In cases of softer wood materials, the artwork may have to be modified to reflect the wood grain appearance." She adds that some sur- faces need to be treated with a light coat of lacquer to act as a sealer, which assists in bonding the photoresist stencil to the surface. If sandcarving or laser engraving aren't what your customer is looking for, sublima- tion or UV printing might be the ticket. "UV printing can be applied to any spe- cies of wood," Tindal points out. Even more appealing is the ease in which it's done. "The wood substrate can be loaded directly onto the flatbed of a UV printer Sandcarving offers the ability to create a unique wood product as it combines both the natural grain and added color to make the item pop. IMAGE COURTESY RAYZIST Odd shapes are easily decorated with a UV printer using custom jigs and rotary attachments for round items. IMAGE COURTESY LOGOJET

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